In a world increasingly defined by virtual meetings and remote interactions, the backdrop you choose for your video calls can speak volumes about you. In a recent study conducted by Durham University, researchers uncovered a fascinating revelation: the presence of houseplants in your virtual background can significantly influence the impressions you make during video calls. Let's explore the power of houseplants in creating a positive impact and leaving a lasting impression.
The Houseplant Advantage
Houseplants have long been appreciated for their ability to enhance indoor spaces, bringing life, vibrancy, and a touch of nature to our homes. Now, it turns out they can work their magic in the virtual realm as well.
1. A Natural Aura of Trustworthiness and Competence
One of the standout findings from the Durham University study is that houseplants in your virtual background can enhance perceptions of trustworthiness and competence. The presence of greenery can evoke feelings of calmness and well-being, which can indirectly boost how others perceive your professionalism and reliability.
2. A Touch of Personality and Authenticity
In a world where virtual backgrounds can often feel sterile, houseplants can inject a dose of personality and authenticity into your online presence. They convey a sense of being down-to-earth, approachable, and environmentally conscious.
3. A Conversation Starter
Houseplants can also serve as excellent conversation starters. In virtual meetings, they provide a non-intrusive yet intriguing topic for small talk. Colleagues and clients may be curious about your choice of plants, leading to more engaging and memorable interactions.
Practical Tips for a Plant-Powered Background
To harness the full potential of houseplants in your virtual meetings, here are some practical tips:
1. Choose Wisely
Select houseplants that are visually appealing and easy to maintain. Avoid cluttering your background with too many plants; one or two strategically placed pots can work wonders.
2. Lighting Matters
Ensure your plants receive adequate lighting, both natural and artificial. Well-lit plants look vibrant and healthy, reinforcing the positive impressions you aim to create.
3. Maintain Care
Just as you nurture your professional skills, take care of your virtual green companions. Regular watering and proper care will keep your plants thriving and your virtual backdrop looking its best.
As videoconferencing becomes a permanent fixture of our professional and personal lives, it's crucial to consider the subtle yet impactful details that can shape the impressions we leave. Houseplants, with their ability to convey trustworthiness, competence, personality, and authenticity, have emerged as unexpected heroes in this virtual era. By incorporating houseplants into your virtual background, you can connect with others on a deeper level and create a positive and lasting impression. So, let your virtual world flourish with the vibrant greens of houseplants, and watch as your online interactions become more engaging and memorable than ever before.
Check out our easy care houseplant range for inspiration
Citation: Cook A, Thompson M, Ross P (2023) Virtual first impressions: Zoom backgrounds affect judgements of trust and competence. PLoS ONE 18(9): e0291444. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0291444